Personal Financial Management
The time for RDR deliberation has passed and the key now for all organisations is to focus on the successful execution of their plans and the creation of a learn and respond process for post-2013 market changes. The agenda for change has already been set and firms need to use this time to act in areas such as:
New Customer Journeys and Communication - with all the focus on the intermediaries, the change in customer experience and journeys (whether direct or via third-party advisers) needs to be completed and executed. A primary concern now should be the consumer education regarding RDR. Whilst the industry has lived with its (shifting) content for 4 years, the consumer is in the main, oblivious to it. Without taking the consumer with them how can organisations expect to engage with them effectively? Communication and education plans are a priority for providers, advisers and intermediaries.
Distribution Strategies - with continuing uncertainty around IFA numbers and the potential for domination by restricted advice models post-2013, providers need to be sure that their plans maintain their market relevance in the new commercial landscape. The withdrawal of bancassurers from the advice space offers an opportunity but may also point the way towards the creation of a D2C proposition. Even for those who have publicly rejected this approach, pre-2013 on-going monitoring of this approach would be advisable.
Positioning and Propositions - coupled with Solvency II and on-going EU changes regarding retail investment sales processes, firms should be assessing the range, pricing and value proposition. If commission bias and soft benefits are clamped down upon, how will providers (especially smaller firms) compete for attention? Larger firms are already investing heavily in training support and raising professional standards, but what services will be required going forward?
Bluerock has been involved in significant RDR related projects and have supported a number of prestigious organisations in their post-2013 landscape thinking. Examples of this include:
- Developing an effective consumer and adviser education/communication programme
- Strategic level analysis feeding into the agenda for operational change and providing project and programme level co-ordination and resources
- Drawing on our unrivalled expertise in financial planning tools from business requirements through to bespoke development teams or assisting firms choose a software package
- Developing entirely new business solutions aimed at filling the much talked-of Advice Gap
- Renewing and adjusting outsourcing arrangements, governance frameworks and TCF systems
- Providing skilled consultants, contractors and interims to assist in the development of retail and corporate wraps; SIPPs; risk profiling and portfolio construction tools, including ETF selection engines.
See also: Banking, Life & Pensions, Wealth Management, Asset Management